Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Raja Bala

Here's Elley relative Raja Bala. I had to take a photo with this chieftain. The girls were Elley's flower girls.

 This is Elley's relative dancing at Elley's wedding. He had a traditional head gear and long pierced ears.

Our first encounter with the Kelabits from Bario Highlands was in the early 1970s. My Sister E  met and married Kallang Akup. If Kallang was a big man, wait till you meet Raja Bala. 

My Brother Henry and Elley was getting married. The whole Chan went to Miri for the wedding. I met Raja Bala when I went to meet Elley Lina's people from the Bario Highlands in the 1990s. I was awed by his towering physique of 6ft 3, and yet his gentleness. I asked him if I could have a photo with him. You can tell his affection by the way he held my girls' hand.

I had left for New Zealand and Elley told me he was very sick and later died. This towering belian tree left a mark on my life. He was not just Elley's uncle, but the man who obliged my request for this photo.

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